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What is Residential Access Control?

The apartment access control systems are solutions for automating access to a residential building. These systems are usually installed at the gate, entrance, interior door and elevators throughout the residential building. While there are many types of residential access control systems, they all share the same goal of making a building more secure and making access to the building more convenient. The system further guarantees that only authorized personnel gain access to the building. This helps safeguard the property, the residents, and their valuable assets. A building access control system can be as simple as a traditional lock and key. The drawback with such a system is it will not be convenient for your residents. You need a solution that brings efficiency and heightens security. Always review the available options before settling for an apartment access control system.

What Are the Components of Residential Access Control Systems?

  • Access Control Panel. This is the component that stores data on tenants and access permissions. Older access control units rely on a physical, on-site device. Newer systems store data in the cloud, which means the data can be accessed remotely and is less likely to be tampered with.
  • Automatic Gate/Door. 65 Access control systems only work with automatic gates or doors. There are many types of credentials, including metal keys. One of the most reliable credentials is the key fobs or cards. The latest entry is the smart access control systems, which use fingerprints or mobile devices. All credentials serve the purpose of storing data on who is accessing the door and what they can access.
  • Reader. The access control system needs a reader, which manages access by scanning credentials. With the traditional metal lock and key doors, all that is needed is the key that fits. With a modern high-tech system, the reader will scan the credentials before sending the encrypted data to the control panel for verification. If the details are correct, the control panel will open the door.
  • Locking Hardware. For the access control system to work, there must be a specific door release mechanism in place. The lock needs to be electronic or magnetic. When your credentials are approved, the access control system triggers the automatic door release mechanism to unlock the door. The signal comes from the control panel. The door will lock automatically after.

Choosing the Right Residential Access Control System

Now that you have some idea of the best type of residential access control system to use, it is time to learn how to choose the best one. Before you start shopping, keep in mind that you need apartment access control systems that are scalable, easy to manage and reliable. The best way to achieve this is to stick with the unified, cloud-based access control systems. A cloud-based system that has convenient hardware such as a keypad and smart locks offers a hands-free, smartphone-based experience in the residential building.

There are also key features you must look for in any cloud-based residential access control system. The key features are:

  • Camera A system with a camera that is built into it will increase security. This is because tenants can verify visitors visually before allowing them into the building. A video intercom at the entrance is the best way to go.
  • Mobile app Having a high-tech system is not enough if your residents will not be able to use it. That is why you should go for a residential access system with a reliable mobile app if you plan on offering smartphone-based access. Reviews on Apple and Google Stores will help you know if it is a good app or not.
  • Integrations The cloud makes it possible for an access control system to communicate easily with other software and devices. If you are going with a cloud-based system, make sure it can integrate with other smart devices such as locks and keypads. This level of integration will provide a seamless experience. You should also choose a system that can integrate with the existing proper management software..




Keypads offer a more convenient solution that replaces metal keys and locks. This type of control system requires users to put in their PIN code to unlock the door. Keypads offer a great way to manage access around the building. There are even keypad access systems that enable tenants to unlock the door using a mobile app.

Keypads have one major limitation; they don’t offer a way for visitors to request access. You will need to have someone to open the door for visitors and delivery couriers. As a result of this limitation, keypads are ideal for use within the residential building rather than at the main entrance.




In a few years, physical keys will no longer be used. They are being replaced by modern access control systems like smart locks. Smart locks enable tenants to open doors using a smartphone or a PIN code. Residents don’t need to carry physical keys. Property managers also don’t need to worry about replacing locks whenever a resident loses their key.

All in all, while they are a modern solution that offers remarkable convenience, smart locks are not ideal for front door access. This is because a resident can share their PIN code with a guest, and that guest may reenter the building without permission. Smart locks are ideal for individual units within the building.



A more modern type of residential control system is the cloud-based system. Just as its name implies, this system operates and stores data in the cloud. With this system, residents can open the door with any advice that is connected to the Internet. This means residents and staff can manage access to your residential building from anywhere. In addition to being able to open the door remotely, the cloud-based system makes it possible for staff to remotely manage access permissions, update the resident directory as well as review entry logs.

The cloud-based system has a feature for visitor management. A good example is the cloud-based video intercom. Visitors can contact the resident from outside and request access. Most cloud-based systems are smartphone-based, meaning you can open the door for visitors remotely. Smartphone-based systems access the reader using Wi-Fi, Bluetooth or an app.




RFID stands for radio frequency identification. It is a form of wireless communication. RFID systems use RFID keys. The technology has been around for decades and remains popular in hotels. With this system in place, all the staff and residents will be assigned a fob or a key card. This has to be scanned at the entrance in order to gain access to the building. The RFID system can also be used beyond the front door to control access to laundry facilities, gyms, package rooms, parking garages and more.

The best thing about an RFID access control system is that it is cheap to install. However, the cost can add up fast if residents and staff keep losing their keys. The system also doesn’t allow visitors to request access.